BYOD 2.0: More about selective mobile application management and control

You might refer to it by many names: bring your own danger, bring your own
disaster, bring your own detonator, or what most people call it, bring your own
device (BYOD). What used to be inconceivable—using one’s own personal mobile
device or smartphone for work—is now one of the hottest trends. The idea of using
a personal smartphone at work sprouted when many executives got their first
iPhones back in 2007 and wanted access to corporate resources. Since then, BYOD
has transitioned from a fad to a major transformation of enterprise IT. As a result,
the contract between IT organizations and employees has shifted from one of
corporate provisioned and managed laptops and Blackberries to one where workers
are free to bring the device of their choice (i.e, laptops, smartphones, and tablets).
These personally owned devices are typically used for a mix of both business and
personal applications.
As more smartphones, tablets, and other types of mobile devices make their way
into employees’ hands, requests for corporate access from those devices are
increasing, which represents a huge challenge for IT departments. Not only has IT
lost the ability to fully control and manage these devices, but employees are now
demanding that they be able to conduct company business from multiple personal
devices. Initially resistant to the idea due to security concerns, IT teams are slowly
adopting the concept, but hesitantly, still concerned about the inherent risks of
allowing personal devices to access and store sensitive corporate information.
Mobile devices are a double-edged sword for enterprises. CRN reported on a
Poneman Institute/Websense survey1 finding that 77 percent of responding business
professionals said that the use of mobile devices in the workplace is important to
achieving business objectives, but almost the same percentage—76 percent—believe
that these tools introduce a serious set of risks. While organizations understand
the risks, the survey showed that only 39 percent have security controls in place to
mitigate those risks. As a result, 59 percent of respondents said they’ve seen a jump
in malware infections over the past 12 months due specifically to unsecured mobile
devices, including laptops, smartphones, and tablets. It’s clear that there is a
significant business risk with BYOD, and it’s not going away.

BYOD Drivers
In 2013, the mobile workforce is expected to increase to 1.2 billion2—a figure that
will represent about 35 percent of the worldwide workforce—and many of those
workers will be using their own devices.
People have become very attached to their mobile devices. They customize them,
surf the web, play games, watch movies, shop, and often simply manage life with
these always-connected devices. Those organizations that have implemented BYOD
programs are reporting increased productivity and employee satisfaction at work.
The 2012 Mobile Workforce Report from enterprise WiFi access firm iPass3 found
that many employees are working up to 20 additional hours per week, unpaid, as a
result of their company’s BYOD policies. Nonetheless, 92 percent of mobile workers
said they “enjoy their job flexibility” and are “content” with working longer hours.
In addition, 42 percent would like “even greater flexibility for their working practices.”
Organizations have been able to reduce some of their overall mobile expenses
simply by not having a capital expenditure for mobile devices and avoiding the
monthly service that come with each device. In addition, in some cases, BYOD
implementations can brand the IT organization as innovators.
The flipside of the convenience and flexibility of BYOD are the many concerns about
the risks introduced to the corporate infrastructure when allowing unmanaged and
potentially unsecured personal devices access to sensitive, proprietary information.
Applying security across different devices from a multiple number of vendors and
running different platforms is becoming increasingly difficult. Organizations need
dynamic policy enforcement to govern the way they now lock down data and
applications. As with laptops, if an employee logs in to the corporate data center
from a compromised mobile device harbouring rootkits, keyloggers, or other forms
of malware, then that employee becomes as much of a risk as a hacker with direct
access to the corporate data center.
Mobile IT is a major transformation for IT departments that is deeply affecting every
major industry vertical, and the effects will continue for years to come.

BYOD 1.0 (2009-2012)
BYOD 1.0 is the industry’s first attempt at solving problems related to personally
owned devices in the workplace. BYOD 1.0 consists of two primary components—
mobile device management (MDM) and device-level, layer 3 VPNs. The primary aim
of MDM is to manage and secure the endpoint device itself, including varying
amounts of protection for data at rest on the device (which is typically limited to
enabling native device encryption via configuration). The primary aim of the layer 3
VPN is to connect the device back into the corporate network, providing data-intransit
security for corporate traffic.
Both of these BYOD 1.0 components have a drawback—they are umbrellas that
protect and manage the entire device, rather than zeroing in on just the enterprise
data and applications on that device. Since these are usually dual-purpose (work/
personal) devices, this device-wide approach causes issues for both workers and for IT.
Employees don’t like that BYOD 1.0 imposes enterprise controls over their personal
devices, applications, and information. One of the most commonly cited examples
is that of the employee who leaves a company and has his device wiped by the
organization, losing photos of his family along with the enterprise data and
applications. People are also concerned with the privacy of their personal data
under a BYOD 1.0 scheme.
From an IT perspective, organizations agree—they don’t want to have to concern
themselves with personal data or applications. As soon as they manage the entire
device or simply connect that device to the corporate network via VPN, that
personal traffic also becomes an IT problem.
While BYOD 1.0 helps to enable the use of personally owned devices in the
enterprise, the device-level approach certainly has its drawbacks. BYOD 2.0 seeks
to solve these shortcomings.
The shift from BYOD 1.0 to BYOD 2.0 builds on many of the concepts developed
during BYOD 1.0, adding a new set of frameworks that enable IT organizations to
wrap enterprise applications in a security layer.

BYOD 2.0 (2013- )
Throughout BYOD 1.0, F5 has provided connectivity for mobile devices into
enterprise networks with VPN functionality, most commonly through iOS and
Android versions of the F5® BIG-IP® Edge Client®. This layer provides management
capabilities as well as functionality such as authentication and authorization, dataat-
rest security, and data-in-transit security, among others.
BYOD 2.0 builds on the BYOD 1.0 foundation but makes a substantial shift from a
device-level focus to an application-level focus. BYOD 2.0 seeks to ensure that the
enterprise footprint on a personally owned device is limited to the enterprise data
and applications and nothing more. This means that mobile device management is
supplanted by mobile application management (MAM), and device-level VPNs are
replaced by application-specific VPNs. These application-specific VPNs include
technology such as BIG-IP APM AppTunnels, a single secure, encrypted connection
to a specific service such as Microsoft Exchange.
With this approach, workers are happier than with BYOD 1.0 because the enterprise
manages and sees only the enterprise subset of the overall data and applications on
the device, leaving the management of the device itself, and of personal data and
applications, to the device’s owner. IT staff prefer the BYOD 2.0 approach for the
same reasons—it allows them to concern themselves only with the enterprise data
and applications they need to secure, manage, and control.
BYOD 2.0 and the aforementioned application wrapping frameworks are changing
the dynamic in the mobile space. By combining mobile management functionality
and access functionality into a single offering, these wrappers give enterprises a
mobile IT solution that extends from data and applications on the endpoint into the
cloud and data center.
Different types of environments will require different types of access control
mechanisms. The traditional enterprise data center will still accommodate the
traditional, VPN gateway appliance approach to controlling access. By contrast, a
deployment of applications into an Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) public cloud,
such as the Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2), might require a
virtual edition of a VPN gateway that sits alongside virtual machines hosting the
organization’s applications. A Software as a Service (SaaS) application might not
require a VPN at all, but it will still require the identity and authorization data that
a VPN provides today.

Across an organization with a hybrid deployment of all of these types of back-end
environments, the next-generation access offering must provide end-to-end security,
from the application instance on the endpoint device all the way to the data center
cloud, with a single authentication and seamless personal experience. It must also
provide a single pane of glass view for management of the distributed application
environment.
Introducing F5 Mobile App Manager
F5® Mobile App Manager (MAM) is a mobile application management and access
solution that securely extends the enterprise to personal mobile devices. It manages
applications and secures data while satisfying the needs of employees and enterprise
IT departments. For IT, it limits the burden associated with securing and controlling
personal data and mobile use. For employees, it safely separates personal data
and use from corporate oversight. F5 MAM is a complete mobile application
management platform offering security, management, and compliance for BYOD
deployments. It is a true enterprise device, data, and information management
solution that fits the needs of the mobile enterprise better than MDM solutions.
As the proliferation of mobile devices in the enterprise has created new challenges
for IT administrators, they must be able to control devices coming into their network,
track inventory, monitor for threats and vulnerabilities, and protect corporate
information. At the same time, they must simplify the process of provisioning
devices for WiFi, VPN, etc., and support configuring access to email, contacts,
calendars, and other essential communication tools

 

F5 Mobile App Mananger
These administrators also need tools in an extremely heterogeneous device
environment with platforms as different as Android, iOS, Windows Phone, and
others. Unlike existing offerings, F5 MAM includes a suite of business productivity
applications and capabilities to separate and secure enterprise mobile applications
while providing end-to-end security.
For organizations that still require some device-level control for managed devices,
the F5 MAM provides advanced mobile device management, including asset
management, location tracking, control over device settings, network configuration,
secure policy management, user management (LDAP/AD), remote access (i.e., lock,
wipe, and reset), push notifications, and complete device lifecycle management.
Administrators can manage devices globally, by groups or individual devices.
Corporate IT can push policy and configuration requirements to company divisions
quickly and easily while enforcing compliance. This allows administrators to maintain
consistent policies across all the devices in the enterprise.
F5 MAM Workspace
Organizations and employees both want the ability to segregate professional and
personal information. F5 MAM Workspace is an innovative solution allowing
enterprises to truly create a virtual enterprise workspace on a wide variety of
 mobile devices. With MAM Workspace, individuals can have separate sectors and
associated policies for their personal and enterprise uses of a device. This enables
IT to control how employees access key corporate information while ensuring that
employees maintain the freedom to take full advantage of their mobile devices.
MAM Workspace delivers an enhanced security framework by providing secured
containers in which all enterprise data and information for an employee are stored.
The benefit is the ability to support a secure, separate, and customized enterprise
workspace that, from a user’s perspective, cleanly segments personal and business
uses of a device. Secured applications require no special handling by the user and
can be installed in the normal way for a given platform. All secure application data
is encrypted on disk, including data saved to removable media, if such an action is
allowed. The secure MAM Workspace can be protected by a password or PIN that
is independent of the device password. IT can also reset a user’s MAM Workspace
password, lock down a user’s MAM Workspace, or wipe the device in the event of
 a policy violation.

F5 MAM App Wrapper
Organizations can also add their own applications to the secure workspace. MAM
makes creating a secure application a simple and quick experience. Organizations
have the ability to add any application to the secure, IT-controlled environment. In
addition, there is zero need to recompile to create a secure application. F5
MAMApp Wrapper scans the existing code in third-party apps, identifies any security
vulnerabilities, and injects new proprietary code. This wraps and secures the app
for manageability and deployment.
MAM App Wrapper is unique and highly efficient as it eliminates the need for
developers to recompile their original code in order to make apps secure for
deployment and management via the administrator portal. This process is
automatically handled by the MAM App Wrapper when an application is uploaded,
with no API or software development kit (SDK) necessary.
F5 MAM Connect
Email is one of the most critical communication tools for organizations and
employees alike. No email, no work. Often, organizations will allow corporate
 email configuration on a personal device, delivering messages directly to the
person’s default email app on the mobile device. Many organizations will use
Exchange ActiveSync (EAS), the push messaging component of Exchange Server
 that relays messages to mobile devices. EAS is an XML-based protocol that
communicates over HTTP or HTTPS and is designed to synchronize email, contacts,
calendar, tasks, and notes from a messaging server to a mobile device.
EAS offers some built-in security, like the ability to communicate over SSL and the
ability to use certificates or two-factor authentication. It also has some device-
specific security features such as remote wipe, password policies, and encryption
policies. These deployments, while secure, still reside in the user’s personal apps,
comingling corporate data with personal data. That means IT becomes responsible
for the user’s personal email app and the employee has uncontrolled access to
corporate information.
F5MAM Connect is a secure, wrapped personal information manager (PIM)
 client that integrates with Microsoft Exchange and delivers enterprise email,
calendar, contacts, tasks, and notes to the employee. MAM Connect offers EAS
synchronization, global address list integration, secure storage, and networkingand is fully
managed via the MAM managed console.

F5 MAM Browser
Many web browsers, including mobile browsers, are configured to provide unfettered
functionality to the detriment of security. Browser vulnerabilities are one of the
easiest ways to get malicious code running on a smartphone, and many mobile apps
are reliant on the mobile device’s browser for functionality. Plug-ins and add-ons to
support Java, JavaScript, Ajax, and other interactive web enhancements can expand
the risk. In addition, tools like tracking cookies can impair a user’s privacy, and all
these browsers are susceptible to cross-site scripts and other website vulnerabilities.
Plus, as with email, corporate web navigation is being handled by the person’s
personal, default web browser. This is not to mention the IT nightmare of needing
to support all of the various mobile browsers residing on employees’ smartphones.


The F5MAM Browser is a secure and managed browser delivered within MAM.
It provides employees with a full-featured browser, separate from their personal
browsers, with the control IT needs for secure browser access. It facilitates
integrated blocked and safe lists without reliance on proxies, provides controls for
enterprise proxy configuration, and allows administrators to push configuration
via the web-based MAM portal.
F5 MAM App Store
Most smartphone owners are very familiar with their respective app stores, which
enable them to get music, games, apps, and other additional functionality on their
smartphones. Tap an icon, find an app, install, enjoy. It should be no different for

enterprise mobile app deployments, but with management and security as top
priorities.
The F5MAM App Store is the enterprise content and application store where
IT wraps and secures apps for manageability and deployment. When secure
applications are distributed via the MAM App Store client, the system has the ability
to filter secure apps from the MAM App Store view depending on the availability of
the MAM Workspace on the device.
Small and large enterprises can now ensure that each department, specific team,
 or role has access to the most up-to-date business applications, documents, and
business media available in the MAM App Store. MAM App Store is platform
 and device agnostic. It can be used to distribute content for x86 (PC, Mac, Linux)
and multiple mobile devices across a variety of operating systems (Android, iOS,
Windows Phone, etc.). It provides web-based portals for store management and
developers, plus client interfaces for user browsing and download, including items
for purchase.
MAM App Store offers a full-featured catalog including screen shots, descriptions,
recent change history, featured apps, ratings, and reviews. Administrators have
 the ability to both push and pull apps. MAM App Store is ideal for enterprises and
service providers that need to deploy custom applications, impose specific licensing
terms on applications, and have complete control over the deployment, update, and
revocation of applications on employees’ devices.

Conclusion
Whether organizations are prepared or not, BYOD is here, and it is transforming
enterprise IT. It can potentially provide organizations a significant cost savings and
productivity boost, but it is not without risk. F5 provides strategic control points for
mobile applications from the endpoint to the data center and to the cloud, enabling
unparalleled security, performance, and agility.
F5 Mobile App Manager helps organizations make the leap to BYOD or transition
from controlling the entire device to simply managing corporate applications and
data on the device, solving the work/personal dilemma. With F5MAM, BYOD 2.0 is now
a reality.

By Peter Silva

Technical Marketing Manager